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Old 06-06-2021, 08:18 PM   #1
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Air Conditioning Tripping 15A Circuit/Outlets

Wondering if anyone has run into this problem (we have 2021 Interstate GL) and if you have any idea on how to fix.

- Plugged into 30amp shore power
- for a few weeks Iíve been able to run AC (about 14amps) to cool unit down at night, watch TV on rear TV, have usb cables plugged into outlets and fridge on. No other major appliances or things pulling down a lot of amps. I donít think Iím getting anywhere close to max amp usage. Been working fine.
- only other power related thing Iíve done in the past few days is the Victron 150/35 solar charge controller app (via Bluetooth dongle) APPEARS to have been configured incorrectly for lithium batteries. It was set to ďGel Victron Deep Discharge 2Ē (position 2 for AGM batteries) instead of what Victrons website said is the appropriate setting for lithium batteries. I changed the battery preset to the one for lithium batteries but I wouldnít think that would play a role for the AC <> tripping breaker issue below.

AC TURNING ON SHUTS OFF OUTLETS

- today we had a REALLY hot day (in 90s outside; inside of airstream got up to 114 degrees before I opened all windows and turned on fan > then down into the 90s inside (didnít turn on ac during day bc I wasnít In the rig)
- weíve also been in areas with lots of pollen over the past 2 months.
- tonight I turned on the ac, went to the back to watch tv and the tv wouldnít turn on. Tried to plug something into the outlet below the central control panel and that outlet didnít work either. The outlet behind the rear tv also didnít work.

I suspected that the 15 amp circuit breaker may have tripped so I shut off the ac, unplugged any gadgets from the outlets and then flipped the 15 amp breaker on the circuit panel below the rear seat (also tried hitting the GFCI button). The TV then worked again (as did the outlet below the central control panel).

I then turned the AC back on and as soon as the overhead unit kicked in the TV shut off.

Any idea why this is Happening? any suggestions on how to fix?

Could the fact itís been so hot out today both inside and outside the Interstate cause the circuits to overheat and then shut off ?

If itís something serious with the electrical config, would love to get it fixed before we do a cross country journey in a few weeks.

Thx so much for any ideas!
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Old 06-07-2021, 05:11 AM   #2
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BeachBrad,

First, not an AI owner.

Do you have anything that monitors the AC voltage? I have a simple analog AC voltmeter that plugs in to an outlet. During any appliance startup, AC, water heater you can see it dip and then settle down. If I plugged my multimeter it has min/max function which would record the lowest voltage and give you a real number for the lowest recorded AC voltage during a start up or monitored period of time.

And examining the pedestal receptacle for damage, and heat always a good thing to check.

Good luck,

Gary
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Old 06-07-2021, 05:15 AM   #3
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Air Conditioning Tripping 15A Circuit/Outlets

You don't say what year your unit is, which would be good to know.

If the 15-amp breaker is actually tripping, then it's possible the breaker should be replaced. Another possibility is that the van's load-shedding circuit is shutting off the outlet. If the latter, you should be able to see that on the same panel where the van tells you how many amps of AC power it is drawing.

Other more experienced folks will likely have other ideas as well.
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Old 06-07-2021, 05:59 AM   #4
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Thank you Gary...I unfortunately don't have anything that monitors AC voltage. I've seen some other posts recommending things like the Victron BMV-712??? would you recommend that (for solar I have the Victron Blue Solar 150/35 with the bluetooth dongle) if that helps.
My only monitoring of the amp usage is the "Power Control System" from Precision Circuits that is in the upper left of my central control panel area in the 2021 Interstate. I can press the "scroll" button to see the cumulative amp load but it doesn't give me any details where the amps are being used. I know that the AC is 14-16 amps just by turning it on and watching that meter.

Thanks for the ideas. really appreciate it.
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Old 06-07-2021, 06:02 AM   #5
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Rocinante, thanks for the post. we have a 2021 Interstate 24GL. you may be right....the breaker may need replacing. I'd be v disappointed if so bc we've only used our Interstate for a few months. I'll check with the airstream service groups we've worked with and see what they say but really appreciate any other ideas the community has. tx again.
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Old 06-07-2021, 06:18 AM   #6
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For what itís worth, with an older unit and not really understanding the mechanics of it , my microwave will not work on 30 amp when the ac is running.

I turn the ac off, do what I need to do and then turn it back on.

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Old 06-07-2021, 06:19 AM   #7
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BeachBrad,

I just installed a BMV-712, it monitors DC system power only. It's a good thing.

If money was no problem I'd get a Fluke multimeter with the clamp on amperage function. But not needing one as a professional electrician I'd look at the Klein CL800 instead. Has the min/max AC clamp on AMP and DC clamp on AMP.

Now you have a tool that can monitor AC amps. It just clamps around one AC wire and you will get data about AMP consumption again with min/max function. Read Klein manual for details on usage.

Having one and getting comfortable with basic functions, a good tool.

Gary
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Old 06-07-2021, 06:24 AM   #8
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Fantastic. I'll look into those and most likely get one! thank you. will share with the group what I ultimately discover is going on here. tx again
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Old 06-07-2021, 08:44 AM   #9
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Hi BeachBrad, I don't have any definitive answers for you but do have some thoughts.

1. I don't think your Victron solar has anything to do with it because that is a DC 12V system and your 15Amp circuit breaker is on the AC 120V system.
2. You mentioned you are plugged into 30A shorepower but are you really getting 30 amps? If you are at home, using your "dogbone" adapter plugged into a regular "household" receptacle, you likely are not getting 30 amps. If you are at an RV park, even plugged into a 30A receptacle, you also may not be getting "clean" power. So now you have two circuits (your A/C and TV circuit) competing for power and one may have to give.

Some ideas to try:
1. Try turning everything off, then run your AC first (wait a few minutes for it to get going as I've seen the A/C amp pull slowly ramp down over a few minutes), then turn on your TV, etc and see what happens.
2. Try running off your generator and see if you have the same issue with the circuit breaker tripping.

As mentioned in other posts, I think you're next addition is a Victron Shunt for your BattleBorns. Since you are already using the Victron App for your solar, you can simply get the Victron 500Ah Bluetooh shunt and view both from the same app. It won't help you fix 120V issues per se, but it's great information on Amp requirements from the 12V system (e.g., how much the TVs and phone chargers pull via the inverter circuit when you are not connected to Shorepower).
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Old 06-07-2021, 09:01 AM   #10
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Hi

I'd bet you at least half a bottle of warm beer that the "30 amp" connector on the power pole is in really bad shape. My guess is that it's getting quite warm when you try to run things. A (careful !!!) finger touch test might verify this. They live a short brutal life ....

One of the nice things about a "fancy" line voltage protector (EMS) is that it will show you stuff like line voltage and current draw. They also do good stuff like surge suppression. They should disconnect you from power if it goes to high or to low. Having one with an "indoor" readout is really useful in cases like this ...

One of many:

https://www.amazon.com/PROGRESSIVE-I...26193275&psc=1

Bob
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Old 06-07-2021, 10:07 AM   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BeachBrad View Post
Wondering if anyone has run into this problem (we have 2021 Interstate GL) and if you have any idea on how to fix.

- Plugged into 30amp shore power
- for a few weeks Iíve been able to run AC (about 14amps) to cool unit down at night, watch TV on rear TV, have usb cables plugged into outlets and fridge on. No other major appliances or things pulling down a lot of amps. I donít think Iím getting anywhere close to max amp usage. Been working fine.
- only other power related thing Iíve done in the past few days is the Victron 150/35 solar charge controller app (via Bluetooth dongle) APPEARS to have been configured incorrectly for lithium batteries. It was set to ďGel Victron Deep Discharge 2Ē (position 2 for AGM batteries) instead of what Victrons website said is the appropriate setting for lithium batteries. I changed the battery preset to the one for lithium batteries but I wouldnít think that would play a role for the AC <> tripping breaker issue below.

AC TURNING ON SHUTS OFF OUTLETS

- today we had a REALLY hot day (in 90s outside; inside of airstream got up to 114 degrees before I opened all windows and turned on fan > then down into the 90s inside (didnít turn on ac during day bc I wasnít In the rig)
- weíve also been in areas with lots of pollen over the past 2 months.
- tonight I turned on the ac, went to the back to watch tv and the tv wouldnít turn on. Tried to plug something into the outlet below the central control panel and that outlet didnít work either. The outlet behind the rear tv also didnít work.

I suspected that the 15 amp circuit breaker may have tripped so I shut off the ac, unplugged any gadgets from the outlets and then flipped the 15 amp breaker on the circuit panel below the rear seat (also tried hitting the GFCI button). The TV then worked again (as did the outlet below the central control panel).

I then turned the AC back on and as soon as the overhead unit kicked in the TV shut off.

Any idea why this is Happening? any suggestions on how to fix?

Could the fact itís been so hot out today both inside and outside the Interstate cause the circuits to overheat and then shut off ?

If itís something serious with the electrical config, would love to get it fixed before we do a cross country journey in a few weeks.

Thx so much for any ideas!
Hi BeachBrad,*

We're very sorry to learn about the issue you are having. Please send us a direct message with your contact information, email and the last 6 digits of your VIN so we can share it with our Customer Service and Technical Support team. We look forward to helping you get this resolved.

You can also reach Airstream Customer Service and Technical Support at*customersupport@airstream.com

Thank you.*
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Old 06-07-2021, 10:18 AM   #12
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Hi WeekendBob, hope you're well. tx yet again for a response. We had an electrician install a 30amp outlet at my relatives house here in New England for when we arrived. That's what I've been plugged into over the last few weeks.

as to the Victron Shunt, does this look like the right one?

will go ahead and try your great suggestions, per usual!!! thanks again.
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Old 06-07-2021, 10:48 AM   #13
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@WeekendBob, so I tried the generator test you suggested above...I unplugged from 30A shore power...turned on the engine, turned on the generator, let it run for a few min, turned off the engine, left the generator on......and the TV/front outlets DID work. hmm. when I shut the generator off, all the outlets stopped working even when plugged back into 30A shore power. so they work when the generator is on (which uses about 20amps) but not when plugged into shore power.
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Old 06-07-2021, 10:52 AM   #14
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Quote:
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as to the Victron Shunt, does this look like the right one?
Yes, that's the one I was referring too.
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Old 06-07-2021, 11:05 AM   #15
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Thank you Airstream for the prompt response via email. just sharing for the group in case others run into this. Airstream said "Vac drop out in the Magnum is seeing the VAC drop and is "trying" to protect the system by shutting the TV circuit down. We suggest you change your VAC drop setting from 100 CAV to 80 VAC and rerest".

I tried this and it appears to be working. I pinged them asking why this just started happening when it was working fine prior.
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Old 06-07-2021, 12:00 PM   #16
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Hi WeekendBob, hope you're well. tx yet again for a response. We had an electrician install a 30amp outlet at my relatives house here in New England for when we arrived. That's what I've been plugged into over the last few weeks.
Just a thought. How far away from the main panel is the new RV receptacle?
An electrician from those good old days might say, "show me the copper". I might be getting this wrong, posts if interpreted correctly suggest this is a new issue for you that started with use of the new RV outlet. Dropping the low voltage threshold fixed the problem. Thinking maybe voltage drop due to total circuit distance between your relatives panel and the load. Add in your connecting cable length to the receptacle to the distance of receptacle to power source (main panel).
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Old 06-07-2021, 01:42 PM   #17
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A new circuit breaker may be defective, but a loose wire from a newly assembled A/S is more likely. Start at the A/C and check all A/C connections back to the house power source. A loose connection can act like a heater and draw an excessive load, thus opening a breaker.
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Old 06-07-2021, 04:22 PM   #18
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Just a thought. How far away from the main panel is the new RV receptacle?

An electrician from those good old days might say, "show me the copper". I might be getting this wrong, posts if interpreted correctly suggest this is a new issue for you that started with use of the new RV outlet. Dropping the low voltage threshold fixed the problem. Thinking maybe voltage drop due to total circuit distance between your relatives panel and the load. Add in your connecting cable length to the receptacle to the distance of receptacle to power source (main panel).


Dave, this is an excellent hypothesis. I DID have to install a 50 foot extension cable to reach our 30amp shore power plug that was installed at a relativeís home. Would that 50 foot extension cable mean that maybe the Interstate is not getting all 30 amps? The interior control panel says itís connected to 30amp but maybe itís not. Tx for the idea.
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Old 06-07-2021, 04:36 PM   #19
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Dave, this is an excellent hypothesis. I DID have to install a 50 foot extension cable to reach our 30amp shore power plug that was installed at a relative’s home. Would that 50 foot extension cable mean that maybe the Interstate is not getting all 30 amps? The interior control panel says it’s connected to 30amp but maybe it’s not. Tx for the idea.
The AC, like most motors, uses a fixed number of watts. Since, in the simplest of explanations, Amps X Volts = Watts this means that as voltage drops, current (amps) climbs to make up the loss in volts. Thus with excessive voltage drop the current will rise enough to over load the circuit. Additionally, with the higher current, the motor will run hotter and have a shorter lifespan. To check your voltage drop measure the voltage while the AC is running.
Disclaimer:
This is a simple and basic explanation, there are other factors involved but for the sake of simplicity and to be understandable by the laymen & non-engineers (and hopefully preventing the thread from careening off into a never ending contest of who is smarter) I have kept it simple and basic.
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Old 06-07-2021, 07:57 PM   #20
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The AC, like most motors, uses a fixed number of watts. Since, in the simplest of explanations, Amps X Volts = Watts this means that as voltage drops, current (amps) climbs to make up the loss in volts. Thus with excessive voltage drop the current will rise enough to over load the circuit. Additionally, with the higher current, the motor will run hotter and have a shorter lifespan. To check your voltage drop measure the voltage while the AC is running.
Disclaimer:
This is a simple and basic explanation, there are other factors involved but for the sake of simplicity and to be understandable by the laymen & non-engineers (and hopefully preventing the thread from careening off into a never ending contest of who is smarter) I have kept it simple and basic.
Maybe helpful also to consider that when an AC is first energized to start there is a very high current briefly flowing through the circuit (locked rotor current) which drops as the rotor starts to turn. The soft start many install on their AC to protect a generator is like a sponge absorbing the sudden spike in current flow at start up.
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